About two months ago, I delivered my Toastmasters Project 3 Speech: Get to the point.

It was a bit difficult as I didn’t prepare well enough for it. However because it was a topic I could directly relate to (I had procrastinated giving my speech 3 for too long), I was able to talk about it fluently.

Speech 3 objectives were:

  • Select a speech topic and determine its general and specific purposes.

The general purpose of this speech was to inspire.

The specific purpose was — after hearing my speech, the audience should be able to identify 3 things that make them procrastinate and have ways to overcome them.

I tied with a fellow toastmaster in my club (Orators Gavel Club) for the Best Prepared Speech and I was elated. She had delivered her speech 7 on the same day.

I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I enjoyed delivering it.

Good day toastmaster, good day gaveliers and other invited guests.

How many of us here have ever had a particular task that we kept procrastinating on? I am sure at point or the other, we would have had moments where we could not just bring ourselves to performing a task, and this could be due to a lot of different factors and some of these I would like to highlight in my speech today titled ‘JUST DO IT!’ It’s a statement followed by an exclamation mark and I am sure we would be familiar with the statement as it is brand statement of a particular brand.
As short as this statement is, just 3 words and the effect of an exclamation mark, it sparks an emotion in us that tends to make us want to ‘just do it’. If only that emotion solely can get all our ‘its’ done, how awesome that would be. However, that is not the case. I am sure a couple of us in this gathering have some ‘its' we wish to cross off our to-do list. I hope that by the end of this speech we go beyond wanting or wishing to get them done and actually get them done.

Your ‘it' can be a variety of things. It could be preparing your next speech as an orator, or starting an exercise regimen which you have been contemplating for years or asking that girl out. It varies from individual to another and within the same individual, it can vary from time to time, however some outlive others. In the process of preparing this speech, I discovered that various factors hinder us from getting some tasks accomplished and I would like to talk on some of them.

One predominant factor is fear and this is especially true when the task to be undertaken is one which we are not so familiar with; taking a new course, getting a new job, asking a girl out amongst others. These represent things that could be life changing and the fact that we know nothing of the possible outcome doesn’t help. In starting a new job, there can be the fear of failing at it or not meeting your full potential. In starting a new relationship, there is the fear of rejection or of failure which we all dread and a lot of people are not comfortable with this. But if we all did only the things that we are comfortable with, we would be very limited and not know how far we can go. A saying goes thus, I would rather regret the things I have done than regret the things I haven’t done. So the next time that fear comes up, just do what you have to do in spite of the fear.

I would rather regret the things I have done than regret the things I haven’t done — Lucille Ball.

Another factor is the feeling of being unprepared. This can also surface when you have a project to carry out or when you want to try something new. We tend to want to wait for that perfect moment when we have all that we require but the truth is that there would never be a perfect moment. As much as we need be well prepared to undertake a task, we shouldn’t let that become a stumbling block in itself. We can get stuck in the phase of getting prepared and we would always find something that needs to be done. The best approach to this is to get all the basic requirements and skills and start whatever it is we want to get into and to acquire additional skills as we go on. This way we make ourselves better and can continue rendering excellent services and producing great products.

As much as we need be well prepared to undertake a task, we shouldn’t let that become a stumbling block in itself.

The last obstacle I would be talking about is the illusion of having ‘no time’. One excuse that people give for not getting to do something is the lack of time. This could be true in certain instances where we are really busy and caught up with other activities in our daily lives. However, oftentimes when we decided to look within, we realize that it is not necessarily the lack of time, but rather the lack of a good drive or sometimes fear or a feeling of ill preparedness or some other reason that keeps us from getting a task done. When we look around in the world, there are certain people who are doing several things and we wonder how and when they find the time to do it all since we all have the same 24 hours in a day. It all boils down to being able to manage our time wisely and being committed to whatever it is we set out to do. So the next time you give an excuse of not having the time to carry out a particular task, take a step back to evaluate yourself to know if it is truly a lack of time or some other factor. If you realize that it truly is a lack of time, you might want to check your schedule and find ways to better manage your time. However, if you find out that it is some other factor, first overcome that and then set out a time to carry out the task.

As you go back tonight, thinking about that ‘it’ that you want to get done, I do hope that beyond the emotions that ignited here, we actually follow up with actions. Remember that yesterday you said tomorrow and today is the tomorrow you talked about yesterday, so ‘JUST DO IT!’

Remember that yesterday you said tomorrow and today is the tomorrow you talked about yesterday, so ‘JUST DO IT!’

My Speech Evaluation — I didn’t use notes!!

These are some thoughts and comments I got from club members.

I would like to read your views as well.



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